#Boss Moves:Taponeswa Mavunga Putting Africa Firmly On The World Map As Director Of Africa At Sony Music UK

Her MO? Nurturing stars, turning them into SUPERSTARS, and helping them create world class music. From the press runs, campaigns and coaching, she does it all. We’ve heard of Dr Dre and Tommy Mottola, some of the world’s top music giants, and now we have our very own Taponeswa Mavunga, a Zimbabwean based in the UK who is stepping up and steadily edging her way to music giant status.Appointed as Director Of Africa at Sony Music UK  late last year, Taponeswa is taking African music and African artists to a whole new level and firmly putting Africa on the world map. We take a look at how she became one of the top players in the game and all her exhilarating achievements…….


Getting Started In The Game

Taponeswa Mavunga’s zeal for the music business dates as far back as her University days where she was an active member of the African Caribbean Society (ACS). The society was the brainchild of Taponeswa and her peers, fueled by the lifestyle and culture around them which they felt did not cater for the growing Black and Asian community. And so they decided to take the bull by the horn and address this, putting on Club Nights, Comedy & Open Mics, Poetry Slams as well as Fashion and Talent Shows. And on graduating and leaving university, Taponeswa did not stop. She went on to pursue her passion by contributing to magazines and assisting in organizing events which eventually won her a job at Warner Music as a receptionist. Driven by passion and ambition, Taponeswa swiftly rose to the top in the record label business, with her first boss in PR, Anita Mackie at East West Records, seeing her potential and recruiting her from the reception to the press office…


Let’s Get Down To Business……

Staying in the music business, Taponeswa joined Sony Music as Head Of Publicity for Columbia UK in 2015, where she was in charge of press strategy across the label’s roster and directed campaigns for artists.In that time, she worked with major artists such as Childish Gambino, Koffee, Wizkid, Davido and Rosalia. They say hard work pays, and Taponeswa’s success story is all the proof needed, culminating in her appointment as Director Of Africa at Sony Music UK in 2020, a newly created position aimed at enlarging the company’s space within African Music. And there is no better person to make sure this gets done. As Director of Africa, Taponeswa is in charge of UK signed artists across Africa, as well as supporting artists within Africa to develop relationships, identify opportunities and increase visibility within the UK. Jason lley, chairman and CEO of Sony Music Uk and Ireland described Taponeswa as ‘”a passionate, forward thinking executive who has a clear vision for the future. She has an incredible relationship with artists and there is no one more suited to represent Sony Music UK in Africa’s accelerating market,”. We certainly couldn’t agree more.


The Big Wins

Taponeswa has made several notable achievements over the years.She was named on Metro UK’s 14 Most Inspirational British Women Of Colour. She also worked on the 2015 Edition of the (MAMAs) MTV Africa Music Awards hosted in Durban. Back when she was based in Johannesburg, she was the Head Of Talent and Music for Viacom Africa, working on MTV Base, BET Africa and Nickelodeon. She spent 15 years at Atlantic Records where she worked on Artist Campaigns that included Ed Sheeran, Jay-Z, Estelle, Rudimental and Sean Paul. In 2018, Taponeswa was inducted into the Women In Music Roll of Honour, which recognises outstanding achievements across the music industry.

And now, as the Director of Africa at one of the world’s biggest music organizations, Taponeswa continues doing us proud and raising the flag even higher as we cheer her on along the way.


By:Chido Kakora

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